Skip navigation
Skip navigation

Games websites : UK users are looking, but not playing

One in five UK Internet users - more than 2,400,000 - visited a games site in December, according to the latest figures from Internet monitoring company NetValue. However only 194,000 actually took part in games over the Internet.

In comparison, 28 percent of all users in the US visited a games site in the same period, or 23,814,000 unique visitors. More than 4,800,000 actually played games over the Internet, evidence that the online gaming market in America is more mature, and where fast Internet access is more widespread. However, the UK leads Germany, France, Spain and Denmark in terms of both visitors to games sites, as well as the number of individuals playing games online.

Online games can be downloaded from games sites and played online, and on some sites, users can play against each other. These games are similar in style to those played on games consoles such as Sony Playstation and Sega’s Dreamcast.

Just under a fifth of users in Spain visited a games site, and they remained online the longest. Spanish users spent an average of 27 minutes, with Danish and UK users just behind on 23 minutes. French and German users remained online for just 14 minutes. Not surprisingly, US users remained longest, staying for an average of 37.9 minutes.

The most visited games site in the US was, with more than 4,500,000 unique visitors, although was the stickiest site, with users spending an average of 129.7 minutes on the site in the month. In the UK, was the most popular site with 234,230 visitors, and was the second most visited games site with 224,660 unique visitors., the new business division of Electronic Arts, featured in the top 5 most visited games sites in the US, UK, Germany and Spain.

The profile of the online gamer

Across all European markets, online gamers are strongly male biased: 97.6 percent in the UK, 90.7 percent in Spain, 84.9 percent in France, and 83.4 percent in Denmark. Although the majority of online gamers in Germany are male, there is a higher percentage of female users (32 percent) playing games. Not surprisingly, the majority are 24 and under, particularly in the UK and France, where 65.1 percent and 55.8 percent of users fit this age group. In Germany, 58.9 percent are students.

European games players contrasts sharply with their US counterparts: 46 percent of users in the US are women, with only one in five users aged 24 or under. 35 percent are aged between 35 and 49, whilst 16% of US gamers are professionals. Only 17% of US gamers are students.

For tables and graphs, please contact

About NetValue

NetValue is the European leader in Internet research, effectively measuring home Internet activity and behaviour online by way of panels. NetValue currently have operations in the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Denmark, US, Mexico, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, China and Taiwan.

Their cutting edge technology, NetMeterä, is unique in the marketplace: it records and tracks ALL applications available on the Internet as it operates at Internet protocol level (and measures not just web usage but also: email, FTP, audio, video etc). NetValue offers the only product able to track Internet user activity in such minute detail, and in real time.

UK clients include MSN, Yahoo!, Excite, Lycos, Freeserve, LineOne, BSkyB, QXL, NTL, ZDNet, Nationwide, Cadbury,, Argos, StreetsOnline, Lunn Poly, Salomon Smith Barney, Morgan Stanley, BNP Paribas, AKQA, Profero, Flextech, Real Networks, AGENCY.COM and Starcom IP.


Panels are recruited by Taylor Nelson Sofres on an exclusive and global basis, allowing for seamless international reporting. An establishment survey quantifies and profiles the number of Internet users in each country. The survey gathers both Internet related data (e.g. level of Internet penetration, main ISP used, how long the household has been connected etc.), as well as demographic and socio-economic data. Using an identical process for all countries involved, TNS determines the characteristics of the Internet user population through weekly telephone interviews. In the UK, 32,000 interviews are carried out annually.

For more information, please visit:

Press contacts

Jannie Cahill, Marketing Manager

Tel: 020 7479 5761, mobile : 07956 873939


James Sherwood or Joshua Van Raalte

Le Fevre Communications

Tel: 020 7563 6400



Games sector

Includes software and « cheat » sites (games tips) but does not include money games and gambling (casino, lotto, bingo etc.)

Gaming protocol

Based on a list of applications (games) used by our panelists. It mainly includes the Multiplayer 3D games. Websites with online games that are non-Multiplayer or Multiplayer board games are not included.

This press release was distributed by ResponseSource Press Release Wire on behalf of NetValue in the following categories: Consumer Technology, Personal Finance, Business & Finance, Computing & Telecoms, for more information visit